Nashville may be country music's capitol, but Bristol VA/TN is the birthplace. It was on State Street in 1927 that talent scout Ralph Peer made the very first country music recordings with The Carter Family, Jimmie Rodgers, and others, for the Victor Talking Machine Company. The recordings known as The Bristol Sessions are recognized internationally as the 'Big Bang' of country music.
Every third weekend in September, State Street in historic Downtown is amped to the beat of Appalachia's past, present, and future. It digs down deep into the roots of the traditional Appalachian sound and lifts its branches to new heights. Boasting over 20 stages and 100 acts, more than 60,000 people flock to Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion for some of the best traditional and progressive Appalachian roots music you'll ever find--at a modest price.
In August 2014, the Birthplace of Country Music opened the Birthplace of Country Music Museum, an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution. This 24,000 square foot facility hosts interactive exhibits, a performance theater, educational programming and much more.
Last Updated: 1/28/2015 12:57 PM